Beijing backs truce bid in Syria

Beijing backs truce bid in Syria
Chinese President Xi Jinping walks with Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) during a summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) at the Ala-Archa state residence in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, on September 13, 2013.

BISHKEK/BEIJING - China supports Russia's proposal that Syria hand over its chemical weapons to international control for their eventual destruction, President Xi Jinping said on Friday.

An observer said the endorsement of Russia's idea by the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation on Friday proves that Moscow and Beijing's stance of objecting to military intervention on the Syrian issue has won regional support.

Xi said at the 13th summit of the SCO in Bishkek, the Kyrgyz capital, "Beijing supports the international community in seeking a ceasefire and an end to violence and in mediating dialogue and negotiations."

Russia's last-minute initiative led US President Barack Obama to back away from planned military strikes in response to a chemical attack that allegedly left hundreds dead last month.

On Thursday, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad confirmed for the first time that his country plans to relinquish its chemical arms. Xi asked both sides in the Syrian conflict to find a political solution.

He said China is ready to enhance communication and coordination through the UN Security Council, and will continue its unremitting efforts to bring about a political settlement.

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